The Batteryman archetype has been seen as a one trick pony for a long, long time, usually leveraging Batteryman AA with Inferno Reckless Summon to put 9000 damage on board for an OTK. Hidden behind the curtain, though, were the actual cards getting you to that game-finishing move. Batterymen have a Monster Reborn, a double Monster Reborn, a Debris Dragon, a Tour Guide From the Underworld, a super-charged Mystic Tomato, and a Des Croaking. Honestly all they were lacking was a decent Level 4 Batteryman.

But Wait!
The next booster set, Duelist Alliance, is hitting shelves very soon, and with it comes a fantastic new Batteryman monster! While most players are flocking towards Satellarknights and Shaddolls, several keen-eyed competitors have noticed legacy support for Batterymen, Skull Servants, and Djinns. Let's take a quick gander at Batteryman 9-Volt, and then discuss just how amazing it really is.

Batteryman 9-Volt
Level 4 LIGHT
Thunder/Effect
1000 ATK / 1000 DEF

When this card is Summoned: You can add 1 "Batteryman" monster from your Deck to your hand, and if you do, this card's ATK and DEF become double its original ATK and DEF, respectively. You can only use this effect of "Batteryman 9-Volt" once per turn. During your End Phase: Destroy this card.

Right off the bat, it's easy for anyone to notice that 9-Volt's searching effect is ridiculous. Sure, you can only do it once per turn, but you get it off any type of Summon. Whether you Normal Summon it, Flip Summon it, or Special Summon it you're definitely getting that search off.

There are about 50 different ways to Special Summon this card, whether it be on-theme support or generic recursion like Call Of The Haunted and Soul Charge. Of course, if you're like me, you've probably never read any of the Batteryman Cards. The strength of a card like this rests in what it can search, and that's where Batteryman 9-Volt gets really nutty.

Shock Therapy
The two most important Batterymen are arguably Batteryman Micro-Cell and Batteryman Charger. Whenever Micro-Cell's flipped, you Special Summon a Batteryman straight from your deck. Afterwards, you draw a card when it's destroyed by battle. Batteryman Charger has a similar Special Summon effect that grabs you a Batteryman from your deck, but it needs to be Normal Summoned first, and it's Level 5. Before we even talk about the other Batteryman Cards, let's look at a super basic combo that's deceptively devastating.

-Set Batteryman Micro-Cell

-Your opponent attacks Micro-Cell, you Special Summon a Batteryman 9-Volt from your deck (+1)

-9-Volt adds Batteryman Charger to your hand [+1(+2)], Micro-Cell dies [-1(+1)], and you draw a card [+1(+2)]

-On your turn, Tribute Summon Charger (-1[+1])

-Special Summon Batteryman 9-Volt from your deck and add another Batteryman monster to your hand [+2(+3)]

Keep in mind that you just +3'd off of nothing but a Micro-Cell, not even taking into account the other four or five cards in your starting hand. Throw the brand new Supply Squad into the mix and you're looking at an easy +4, possibly +5 depending on how the rest of your turn goes. That second 9-Volt search is most likely going to be for Batteryman Fuel Cell, a free Special Summon and Compulsory Evacuation Device. That one-card combo gave you a +3 and put 6800 damage on board.

As Kelly Locke would say, "Golly gee, that was neat."

Really though, the fun's just beginning. As you might've noticed, 9-Volt destroys itself during each of your End Phases. The amount of pressure you put on your opponent with a first turn Thunder Sea Horse into Batteryman 9-Volt into Supply Squad is insane. Even going first and starting with five cards hardly matters when you're ending with a 9-Volt in hand, a search off of the original, and a draw from Supply Squad. Heck, even if you don't draw Thunder Sea Horse you can just loop 9-Volt's because they search themselves.

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Other notable options to add with 9-Volt include Batteryman AAA and Batteryman Industrial Strength. Batteryman AAA is the theme's Debris Dragon, allowing you to put Rank 4's on the field with ease. Industrial Strength is the Batteryman Duelist's Black Luster Soldier - Envoy of the Beginning, giving you a +2 on every resolution of its effect. Lastly, I suppose if you enjoy playing bad cards you could give Batteryman C a try, but at the point I don't know how to help you.

Go Grease Lightning!
Of course, if the Batterymen only had monsters and nothing else they'd be kind of slow. Fuel Cell's only useful if you have two other Batterymen on board, and the giant combo I just mentioned leaves you with a Level 4, 5, and 6 on the field, also known as "not very good for Xyz Summoning." Not only do the Batterymen have delightful monsters though, they've got some seriously powerful spell and trap cards.

For example, Battery Charger is literally just a Monster Reborn for Batterymen. Like, there's no restrictions on it whatsoever barring the 500 Life Point cost. That's amazing. You can use multiples each turn and it doesn't even have a Level requirement. A single Battery Charger often just ends the game right there. 6800 damage quickly becomes 7800 when you revive the first 9-Volt, and Gagaga Cowboy comes in to finish the other player off. Good card is good, basically.

If you thought that was swell, then you're most likely going to enjoy Portable Battery Pack. Everything's better when it's portable, and this trap is no exception. While it's a bit slower than regular ol' Battery Charger, Portable Battery Pack revives two monsters instead of one. That means you can revive 9-Volt and another Batteryman, search Fuel Cell, and probably go for game. Or you could do it during your opponent's End Phase, grab Batteryman Charger, and then on your next turn Special Summon another 9-Volt to grab a Fuel Cell and definitely go for game.

If you want, you can even pack a punch with Recycling Batteries. Konami's effort to promote a greener and cleaner environment allows you to take back two Thunder-type monsters with 1500 ATK or less from your graveyard, for free. It grants you extended use of 9-Volt, Micro-Cell, and AAA. Additionally, if you opt to play the Hunder monsters you can grab back Mahunder, Sishunder, and Pahunder. Quick Charger's basically just a worse Recycling Batteries, since it can't get you back any non-Batterymen, but it boasts the advance of being a Quick-Play Spell.

Short Circuit's the last relevant Batteryman spell. It's the big finisher of the theme, blowing up everything your opponent controls with the only activation requirement being a field of three Batterymen. As I've just explained, that's about as likely as Loukas going x-2 with Spellbooks at a Regional – it's essentially guaranteed. Between Micro-Cell, Fuel Cell, Batteryman Charger, Battery Charger, and Portable Battery Pack, putting three Batterymen on the table isn't very challenging. Short Circuit only needs three Batterymen at point of activation, too, so even something like Book of Moon or Compulsory Evacuation Device can't stop it.

But Are Batterymen Any Good?
The short answer is yes. The long answer is that Batterymen are uniquely good at playing grind games as well as OTKing at the drop of a hat. They're very well positioned against slower strategies like HAT, Madolche, and Geargia, while also out-speeding faster themes like Atlantean Mermails, Sylvans, and Lightsworn. It's completely up to the pilot to decide how to play Batterymen, and an eye for tempo changes is crucial if you want to be successful with the strategy.

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Of course, it's only natural to speculate about the Shaddoll and Satellarknight matchups. Shaddolls are by far the most hyped cards in Duelist Alliance, revolving around several Flip Effect monsters and some very powerful Fusions. El Shaddoll Midrash is the most infamous, preventing either player from Special Summoning more than once per turn. Additionally, it can't be destroyed by card effects. Batterymen really don't care about any of that. You can simply revive a 9-Volt with Portable Battery Pack on your opponent's turn, add Batteryman Charger, and next turn bring it out as well as another 9-Volt to attack over the Midrash. You can even just revive a spent Batteryman Charger with Portable Battery Pack, too, and it'll still have enough ATK to run Midrash down.

As for Satellarknights, I don't think it's really even a contest. If we're only talking about Duelist Alliance cards - which we are, by the way - then this particular theme isn't an issue. Both Satellarknights and Batteryman are making a lot of the same plays, but Batterymen have wider combo branches and easier ways to OTK. And that's not to say Satellarknights, or even Shaddolls for that matter, are bad decks. They're both very potent strategies and they'll carry a huge amount of power right out of the gates. What I am saying is that Batterymen make plays that literally no other deck can do, and that's something you definitely should't overlook.

What do you think of Batteryman 9-Volt? Do you think that I'm hyping it up too much? Let me know your thoughts down in the Comment section below!

-Doug Zeeff